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Coronavirus in Colorado: Latest COVID-19 updates across the state

Posted at 7:09 AM, Mar 23, 2020
and last updated 2020-03-25 07:42:57-04

COLORADO SPRINGS — Coronavirus cases continue to rise in Colorado, with the statewide total at 912 as of Tuesday afternoon, including 11 deaths. And more closures have been announced, too, including executive action by Gov. Jared Polis that closed down all dining at restaurants and bars.

Check here for the latest update on the number of cases, the age, gender and location of presumptive positive, indeterminate and confirmed cases from the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment.

Below, we're updating this blog with the latest information regarding COVID-19 in Colorado.

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Tuesday, March 24

9:30 p.m. | Second El Paso County deputy tests positive

The El Paso County Sheriff's Office announced Tuesday night that a second deputy has a lab-confirmed case of COVID-19.

The office said the deputy has been isolated since the first developing symptoms and all employees and inmates who have had direct or indirect contact, or other work-related contact with this employee have been personally contacted and notified.

Staff has had plans and structures in place for some time and have continued to take steps to prevent further spread to other employees and inmates that are housed in the jail, the Sheriff's Office said.

5:30 P.M. | Fort Carson medical personnel to deploy to Washington State

Fort Carson announced Tuesday that more than 300 medical personnel from the 627th Hospital Center will deploy to Washington State to provide supplemental, routine, and emergency medical support to community medical staffs, allowing them to focus their resources and efforts on detecting and treating patients believed to have been exposed to COVID-19.

The Mountain Post said this response is part of the whole-of-nation approach to fighting COVID-19.

5:00 p.m. | Free parking in downtown Manitou Springs until April 30

The City of Manitou Springs announced Tuesday that parking in the downtown region is free of charge until April 30. This action was put in place to better accommodate the local restaurants that are now doing curbside pickups, the city said.

Barr Trail Lot, the 400 blocks of Ruxton and Winter will remain paid parking. Additionally, residential parking areas will still be monitored and enforced as necessary.

4:30 p.m. | King Soopers to install partitions at cash registers

King Soopers announces Tuesday that beginning this week, many stores are starting the process of installing plexiglass partitions at cash register to further promote physical distancing. The company said the anticipate every check out lane to have a partition within the next several weeks.

The company also said that it is advocating to government officials at all levels for help securing a priority place in line for all grocery workers - after health care workers - to have access to protective masks and gloves.

3:40 p.m. | White House daily briefing on COVID-19.

3:30 p.m. | Mayor Suthers update regarding parks and COVID-19

1:46 p.m. | Two additional COVID-19 cases identified in Teller County, one deadly case.

The Teller County Health Officials have announced two additional lab-confirmed cases of COVID-19 in the county. One of those cases was deadly.

Health officials are investigating and will be notifying any who was in close contact with those affected. There is now a total of three cases in Teller County.

12:35 p.m.| Pueblo County receives supplies from National Strategic Stockpile

Personal protective equipment and other items from the Strategic National Stockpile sent to Colorado started being shipped out to health care providers across the state Monday by the state, though health officials say the supply is only enough for one day of work statewide. The supplies include masks, surgical masks, surgical gowns and face shields that the county says will be used at long-term care facilities.

11:58 a.m.| Colorado State Patrol: Travel if necessary

Colorado State Patrol is reminding everyone that the state's borders have not closed to anyone traveling, however, they are encouraging everyone to travel "if absolutely necessary" while social distancing continues.

10:47 a.m.| Otero County Health Department reports first positive COVID-19 case.

The Otero County Health Department has announced an Otero County resident has tested positive for COVID-19. The patient is in their 40s and was previously quarantine while awaiting the test results. The patient has been placed in isolation and is recovering.

9:05 a.m.|Fort Carson declares Public Health Emergency

The installation commander of Fort Carson has declared a Public Health Emergency in place for 30 days, starting Tuesday.

This declaration gives the installation commander the opportunity to take more protective measures as the threat of COVID-19 continues. The post says this order will be in place for 30 days.

Monday, March 23

9:00 p.m.| El Paso County Public Health reports fourth COVID-19 related death

The El Paso County Public Health Dept. reported the fourth COVID-19 related death in the county. The individual was a male in his 80s. No further information was released pertaining to this particular case. Learn more about cases statewide, here.

7:30 p.m. | Air Force Academy elevates health protection level

The Air Force Academy directed Health Protection Condition Charlie (HPCON) on Monday in accordance with Secretary of the Air Force direction to combat the spread of COVID-19.

According to the Academy, the HPCON Charlie measures include the folowing actions:

- Adhere to strict hygiene (no handshaking, frequent hand-washing, clean common-use items often)

- Implement social distancing (limit in-person meetings, socials and mass gatherings)

- Maximize telework in accordance with Office of the Under Secretary of Defense’s civilian personnel guidance

- The Exchange and Commissary will remain open with changes to operating hours

6:35 p.m. | Public health emergency declared for Peterson Air Force Base because of COVID-19

The Peterson AFB installation commander declared a public health emergency for the base. The declaration of a public health emergency allows the base commander to take certain protective measures, such as restricting base movement and limiting services. The emergency order is in place for 30 days. The order can be terminated or extended as required.

5:19 p.m. | Peterson Air Force Base and Schriever Air Force Base announce positive COVID-19 cases.

Military officials say there is a total of three positive COVID-19 cases across Peterson Air Force Base and Schriever Air Force Base.

In a press release, Peterson Air Force base announced two positive COVID-19 cases. On March 23, an active duty service member and a dependent have tested positive for the novel coronavirus (COVID-19). These two confirmed cases are unrelated. Both individuals are quarantined and receiving support and medical care.

The first Schriever Air Force Base member tested positive for COVID-19. A 50th Space Wing government civilian has been in isolation at home since March 17 and is receiving care in accordance with Centers for Disease Control, Force Health Protection and 21st Medical Group guidelines.

4:55 p.m. | Fremont County announces first COVID-19 case.

The Fremont County Department of Public Health and Environment is reporting its first positive case of COVID-19 in the county. Officials haven't released much information but they said the patient is a female. She is working with health officials to identify people that may have had close exposure.

4:10 p.m. | Daily White House coronavirus press briefing

3:50 p.m. | Parking in downtown Colorado Springs, Old Colorado City free through April 30 to accommodate curbside service

The City of Colorado Springs announced that effective immediately, enforcement of parking meters and booting will be suspended until Thursday, April 30. All parking meters in downtown Colorado Springs and Old Colorado City will be free and without time limits. Structured parking will also be free. The city said the purpose of the free parking is to allow residents easy access to restaurants offering curbside food service.

2:03 p.m. | Denver mayor orders residents to ‘stay at home’ amid COVID-19 epidemic

Denver Mayor Michael Hancock issued a "stay-at-home" executive order Monday, directing all of the city's more than 700,000 residents to stay inside their homes as the COVID-19 epidemic continues to grow.

The directive will take effect 5 p.m. Tuesday and last until April 10, but the order could be extended.

Exemptions to the order include people in essential positions that need to travel to work and residents going to the grocery store, gas station, bank or other essential businesses.

"This isn't a recommendation anymore. People need to stay at home," Mayor Hancock said.

The mayor said the city will enforce the order if necessary, but he is asking residents to voluntarily comply to slow the spread of the virus.

The order applies only to residents of the city and county of Denver. The state of Colorado has yet to issue such an order. However, Governor Jared Polis issued an order Sunday directing employers to cut the number of in-person workers at businesses spaces to 50% or less of the workforce by Tuesday.

12:27 p.m. | Colorado attorney general asks for courts to reschedule criminal trials

The Colorado attorney general has asked state courts to reschedule trials to protect those involved in the trial from the novel coronavirus.

Trials require several parties: the defendants, the jury, witnesses, judges, attorneys and court staff. As the virus spreads around the state, Attorney General Phil Weiser said that continuing with these trials endangers everybody involved, and as a result, anybody they come in contact with.

12 p.m. | Officials ask for changes to unemployment filing

The surge of unemployment claims in Colorado has led to some difficulty navigating the state's unemployment website, so officials are asking filers to spread out their usages on the site.

The Colorado Department of Labor and Employment on Monday requested the following:

• If your last name begins with the letter A-M, file your claim on Sunday, Tuesday, Thursday or after noon on Saturday.

• If your last name begins with the letter N-Z, file your claim on Monday, Wednesday, Friday or before noon on Saturday.

9:38 a.m.| Teller County announces first COVID-19 case

Teller County Public Health and Environment announced the first positive case of COVID-19 in the county. They said the "case investigation is ongoing" and they are working with public health partners to help prevent further spread.

Sunday, March 22

5:22 p.m. | Gov. Jared Polis orders non-critical workplaces in Colorado to reduce their in-person workforce

Governor Jared Polis issued an executive order Sunday that requires non-critical workplaces in Colorado to reduce their in-person workforce by 50%. The directive will take effect Tuesday at 8 a.m. and will last through April 10.

Exemptions in the order include health care, critical infrastructure, manufacturing, retail, services, news media, financial institutes, construction, defense, public safety, vendors to public services.

Polis also encouraged employers to convert to a 100% telecommuting set up, and implement telework capabilities to the greatest extent possible. When not possible, stagger work scheduled to reduce proximity.

You can read the order here.

5:10 p.m. | Colorado Gov. Jared Polis provides an update on the latest on Colorado's response to COVID-19

3:10 p.m. | White House press conference on response to COVID-19

2:45 p.m. | El Paso County deputy tests positive for COVID-19
The El Paso County Sheriff's Office announced Sunday that a deputy has a lab-confirmed case of COVID-19. The Sheriff's Office said the individual is isolated at home, has been for nearly a week, and is getting better. The office also said all employees who have had contact with the deputy have been notified and are taking appropriate precautions.

In their release, the Sheriff's Office said staff has had plans and structures in place for some time and have continued to take steps to prevent further spread to other employees and inmates that are housed in the jail.

The lobby at the Office of the Sheriff, located at 27 E. Vermijo Avenue will continue to be closed to the public. The lobby at the El Paso County Jail remains open for bonding and use of the Kiosk only.

1:45 p.m. | Fort Carson announces second case on post

Sunday, Fort Carson announced that they have identified a second positive COVID-19 case on post.

The individual is a Department of the Army civilian who works at Evans Army Community Hospital. Fort Carson said this person is a female healthcare worker in her 60s and she is now in isolation at home. The post added that she had limited contact with select patients and staff who have been notified and are being monitored by Fort Carson Public Health.

12:15 p.m. | Colorado Attorney General calls for statewide pause on evictions

Sunday, Colorado Attorney General Phil Weiser's office released a statement calling for a statewide pause on eviction proceedings during the COVID-19 state of emergency. The full statement can be read below.

"In this emergency, evicting any Coloradan from their home would exacerbate the public health and economic crisis we are fighting together. I applaud Governor Polis in leading state agencies and local governments in an effort to stop evictions during this crisis. I commend the many state courts that have already suspended or postponed eviction proceedings and are not accepting new eviction applications during this crisis. I also applaud the Chief Justice of the Colorado Supreme Court for granting local judges the authority to make that determination. So far, courts in Denver, Mesa County, Weld County, and Boulder County, among others, have taken this important step. I urge all Colorado courts to join in recognizing the urgent need to pause all eviction orders during this emergency. Nobody should be without their home as we all grapple with this crisis.”

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Get the latest from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

Click here for the latest update on the number of cases, the age, gender and location of presumptive positive, indeterminate and confirmed cases from the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment.

People who have general questions about coronavirus disease 2019 can call CO HELP at 303-389-1687 or 1-877-462-2911 for answers in many languages. Email COHELP@RMPDC.org for answers in English.